Thankful for Things I Used to Hate
One of the things I love about Thanksgiving is how it inspires multitudes of people to consider their blessings and seek an attitude of gratitude (ha! Did you see that? I made a rhyme…). I can’t help myself but join in. Positive peer pressure, I suppose. I decided to dig a little deeper this year and look at the most difficult things in my life and gaze at them from a different perspective. One of gratitude.
I’m thankful for chronic illness.
I’ve been a type 1 Diabetic since the age of five and I never, in my wildest dreams, would have thought I could say I was thankful for this disease, but here I am. I’m thankful. How? It certainly hasn’t been easy, but I’ve come to see that my chronic illness has been channel for character building that could have have been accomplished otherwise. Perseverance, big- picture thinking, discipline, patience, hope, and faith. I wouldn’t trade any of those things and if I had to come by these blessings by way of T1D, then I’m thankful.
I’m thankful for unmet expectations.
Someone didn’t come through for me. A situation sadly didn’t turn out the way I had desperately hoped. Unmet expectations can cause so much grief, but they also do something else, they show us reality and give room for us to seek the One who never disappoints and made us to have all our wild expectations met in Him. For this, I’m so very, very thankful.
I’m thankful for rejection.
Acceptance and affirmation is something I crave and thrive upon, but rejection has taught me something worth all the pain that it brings. It has taught me that I am still fine when I’m not liked. I’m ok when I don’t get to participate. My value and my worth do not change when I suffer the loss of opportunity or relationship.
I’m thankful for tears.
All my close family and friends know that I absolutely hate crying. I hate it. It makes me feel out of control, weak and vulnerable. And I look awful when I cry. Some girls look so cute and sweet when they weep...not me. I’m thankful for tears because they remind me that I am human and I have feelings that need to be expressed now and again. I might not be happy about it, but that’s different than being grateful. And so often, tears usher in smiles and relief. Sometimes right away. Sometimes after a long wait. The vulnerability that accompany tears also puts in me a position to be loved and held by the One who has always loved me first.
Now, just to be clear, I am NOT ok with all the things I currently hate. These are just a few icky things in my life with which I’ve come to terms. Not sure if I’ll ever be thankful for Ethan’s sensory issues or with my own weaknesses and quick temper, but who knows… I know someone who enjoys surprising me with miracles, so I could be changing my tune sooner than I think.
What are some unlikely things in your life that you have become thankful for?